9 Day Riviera Itinerary of Both France & Italy
Explore The French & Italian Riviera in 9 Days
Welcome to your nine-day tour of the Riviera, a beautiful stretch of coastline that runs along the Mediterranean Sea in southeastern France through into Italy.
This itinerary will take you from the glamour of Saint Tropez, a chic and fashionable resort town known for its exclusive beach clubs and luxury yachts, to the charming fishing village of Portofino, located on the Italian Riviera. The tour will end in the Cinque Terre region of Italy, a stunning stretch of coast dotted with colorful villages and breathtaking views.
Over the course of nine days, you’ll have the opportunity to experience the best of what the French Riviera and the Cinque Terre have to offer, from sun-drenched beaches and crystal-clear waters to charming villages and world-class cuisine.
Day 1: Western Riviera Tour: Discover The Beautiful Hills Of The French Riviera
The French Riviera is known for its breathtaking Mediterranean coastlines, but there is more to this region than just its seaside towns and beaches. On our Western Riviera tour, you will also have the opportunity to explore the region’s stunning inland hills.
Ensure you enjoy the best of the Western Riviera with Travel by Luxe.
Antibes Guided Tour
Following collection at your accommodation, our tour begins in the coastal town of Antibes in the luxury and style of our executive-class air-conditioned vehicle.
Along with your guide explore the charming streets of the Old Town, where you can admire the colorful houses and boutiques.
You might visit the Musée Picasso, which is housed in a medieval castle and contains over 200 works by the famous artist. The tour could also include a stroll through the Marché Provençal, a bustling outdoor market where you can sample local produce and purchase souvenirs.
Other possible stops could include the Port Vauban, the largest pleasure boat harbor in Europe, and the Fort Carré, a 16th-century military fortress with breathtaking views of the Mediterranean.
Inland to Gourdon
As you depart from the coastal areas on the Western Riviera Tour, you’ll journey further inland to the breathtaking Loup Valley. This region is known for its rolling hills and picturesque scenery. As you continue your ascent into the mountains, the landscape will change, featuring heartier trees and shrubs adapted to the colder environment at an elevation of 760 meters.
Your first destination will be the charming village of Gourdon, where you can take in breathtaking views of the Alps and the Mediterranean Sea, as well as savor the delicious local cuisine.
Tourrettes Sur Loup
After departing Gourdon, your journey will take you along a scenic route boasting breathtaking natural features such as canyons and waterfalls. If your visit coincides with the summer months then your driver guide would be happy to take you through the beautiful Lavender fields.
Your next stop will be the medieval village of Tourrettes Sur Loup, known as the capital of the violet flower. In addition to exploring the charming streets and interacting with locals, you’ll have the chance to try local delicacies featuring violet flowers, such as crystallized violet petals, violet liqueur, and violet ice cream.
Explore The Artistic Charm of Saint Paul de Vence
Your final stop of the day will allow you to explore Saint Paul de Vence. This charming medieval village is known for its rich history and vibrant art scene, attracting famous artists and writers such as Picasso and Matisse.
During the tour you’ll visit the Fondation Maeght, a museum showcasing works by artists such as Miró and Chagall, as well as the Chapelle du Rosaire, an iconic chapel adorned with stained glass windows and mosaics by Matisse.
You’ll also have the chance to sample local specialties at one of the village’s many artisanal food shops or enjoy a leisurely lunch at a restaurant with breathtaking views of the surrounding countryside.
Day 2: Eastern French Riviera Tour
The Eastern Riviera is a beautiful and diverse region located on the Mediterranean coast of France. It offers a wide variety of attractions and activities for travelers, making it a great place to spend your second day on our Riviera itinerary.
Experience the Beauty and History of Eze and Fort de la Revère
Eze is a charming medieval village perched atop a hill offering stunning views overlooking the Mediterranean Sea.
During the tour, you’ll have the opportunity to wander through its ancient castle and Notre Dame de l’Assomption, a 12th-century church. You’ll also have the chance to visit the Fragonard Perfume Factory and learn about the art of perfumery.
After exploring Eze, the tour will continue to Fort de la Revère, a 19th-century military fortress. The fort was built in the late 1800s to protect the region from foreign invasions and served as a military base until the 1960s.
Today, it is open to the public and offers guided tours, allowing visitors to learn about its history and take in stunning views from its vantage point.
La Turbie - The Balcony Of Monaco
La Turbie, also known as “The Balcony of Monaco,” sits on a hill overlooking the Mediterranean Sea and the Principality of Monaco.
The main attraction of La Turbie is its Trophy of Augustus, a Roman monument built in 6 BC to celebrate the victories of the Roman Empire. The monument is a great example of Roman architecture and engineering.
One of the main reasons to end a driver-guided tour of the eastern Riviera in Sainte-Agnès is for its stunning views. From the town, you can see the entire eastern Riviera, including the cities of Menton and Monaco, as well as the surrounding mountains and the Mediterranean Sea.
Sainte-Agnès is also home to several historical and cultural attractions, such as the ruins of a medieval castle, a 19th-century chapel, and a museum dedicated to the history of the town.
Day 3: Saint Tropez Private Tour
Saint Tropez is a small coastal town located in the Var department of southeastern France. It is known for its beautiful beaches, glamorous atmosphere, and rich history.
Today, Saint Tropez is a popular vacation destination for tourists from around the world, who come to enjoy its sunny weather, beautiful scenery, and luxurious lifestyle.
Explore Saint Tropez Old Town
The old town of Saint Tropez is a charming and picturesque part of the town that is filled with narrow streets, colorful houses, and small squares.
One of the main highlights of the old town is Place des Lices, the main square in the town. This square is a popular gathering place for locals and tourists, and it is home to a weekly open-air market.
Another interesting site to see in the old town is the Church of Notre-Dame-de-l’Assomption. This church is a beautiful example of medieval architecture and has a rich history.
As you walk through the narrow streets and alleys of the old town, you will have the opportunity to see some of the traditional houses and buildings that give Saint Tropez its unique character. You will also have the chance to explore some of the small shops, cafes, and restaurants that line the streets.
Visit The Citadel
The Citadel is a 16th-century fortification that was built to defend the town of Saint Tropez. Today, it serves as a museum and art gallery, and it is one of the main landmarks of the town.
As you explore the Citadel, you will have the opportunity to learn about the history of the town and see some of the exhibits and artifacts that are on display. The Citadel is home to a collection of paintings and sculptures by artists such as Paul Signac, Henri Matisse, and Raoul Dufy.
One of the main highlights of the Citadel is its location, which offers breathtaking views of the town, the Mediterranean Sea, and the surrounding area. You will have the chance to take in these views from the top of the Citadel, which is a great spot for photography.
Enjoy The Beaches of St Tropez
Saint Tropez is known for its beautiful beaches, so no tour here would be complete without taking the opportunity to relax on one of these beaches and soak up the sun.
Some of the most famous include Plage de Pampelonne and Plage des Graniers. Plage de Pampelonne is located just outside of the town and is known for its crystal-clear waters and upscale beach clubs. Plage des Graniers is a smaller, more secluded beach that is located in the center of the town. It is a great spot for swimming and sunbathing.
There are also a variety of beach activities available, such as parasailing, jet skiing, and stand-up paddleboarding.
Shop and Dine in the Marina
Before joining your driver return to your accommodation, and enjoy the high-end boutiques, art galleries, and designer stores in the Marina where you can browse and shop for luxury items, souvenirs, and gifts.
If you are in the mood for some fine dining, there are several Michelin-starred restaurants in the marina that serve gourmet French cuisine.
Day 4: Verdon Grand Canyon Excursion
The Verdon Grand Canyon, also known as the Gorges du Verdon, is a breathtaking natural wonder located in the Alpes-de-Haute-Provence department of southeastern France and is the largest canyon in Europe.
The canyon was formed by the Verdon River, which has carved a deep gorge through the limestone rock over millions of years. The gorge is up to 700 meters deep and 20km long, and it is surrounded by towering cliffs and lush vegetation.
Visit the Col des Champs Viewpoint
The Col des Champs viewpoint is a great place to start your tour of the Verdon Grand Canyon. Located on the eastern side of the canyon, it offers breathtaking views of the gorge and the surrounding landscape.
From the viewpoint, you can see the Verdon River far below, as well as the steep cliffs and rocky peaks that line the sides of the canyon. You can also see the village of Moustiers-Sainte-Marie, which is located at the foot of the canyon.
Explore The Village of Moustiers-Sainte-Marie
The village of Moustiers-Sainte-Marie is located at the foot of the Verdon Grand Canyon.
Along with your guide, you can explore the Notre Dame de Beauvoir church, which is a beautiful example of Romanesque architecture, and home to a number of religious relics and artifacts.
Another interesting site to visit in the village is the Moustiers Sainte Marie ceramic museum, which is located in a 17th-century house. The museum is home to a collection of ceramic works from the region, including pottery, tiles, and decorative objects. You can learn about the history and techniques of ceramic-making in Provence and see some of the beautiful pieces that have been created in the region.
In addition to these sites, the village of Moustiers-Sainte-Marie has a number of small shops, cafes, and restaurants that are worth exploring. You can browse the local artisanal products, try some of the regional specialties, or simply relax and enjoy the ambiance of the village.
Hike Along The Verdon Gorge
One of the best ways to experience the Verdon Grand Canyon is to take a hike along the gorge. There are a number of trails that wind along the canyon, offering a variety of difficulty levels and lengths.
As you hike along the gorge with your guide, you will have the opportunity to see some of the most breathtaking parts of the canyon. You will be surrounded by towering cliffs, rocky peaks, and lush vegetation, and you will be able to see the Verdon River far below.
Along the way, you will find a number of viewpoints that offer panoramic views of the canyon and the surrounding landscape. You can stop at these viewpoints to take in the views and take some photos. You can also take a break and rest at one of the picnic areas along the trail.
A guided hike along the Verdon Gorge is a great way to experience the beauty and majesty of the canyon, and it is suitable for people of all fitness levels. Just be sure to wear comfortable shoes, bring plenty of water and snacks, and follow the safety instructions of the tour guide.
Day 5: Private transfer from Nice to Genoa
During a private transfer from Nice to Genoa, which takes approximately 2 hours and 15 minutes, you will have the opportunity to see the azure blue sea and sandy beaches.
Genoa Guided Tour
Meet your guide at the designated location, where you will be introduced and given an overview of the day’s itinerary.
Overview of Genoa’s history and culture: Learn about the rich history and vibrant culture of Genoa, a city with a long and storied past dating back to ancient times. Your guide will provide context and insights into the city’s development and its role as a major port and trading hub.
Tour of Genoa's Old Town
Stroll through the narrow streets of the historic center with your private guide and visit the Palazzo Ducale.
Walk through the Strade Nuove, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a prime example of Genoa’s wealth and architectural prowess in the 16th and 17th centuries
Visit some of the grand palazzi, or mansions, that line the Strade Nuove and were once home to the city’s noble families
Explore the Galata Museo del Mare, a museum dedicated to the city’s rich maritime history. See exhibits on the ships and sailors that helped make Genoa a major trading hub, and learn about the city’s role in the development of the modern global economy.
Genoa Food Tour
Join us on a Genoa food tour and discover the city’s delicious traditional cuisine with a local foodie guide. As you explore the downtown area, you’ll have the chance to sit down and taste some of the best dishes Genoa has to offer. Surrounded by a genuine and authentic atmosphere, you’ll get a true sense of the city’s culinary traditions.
Our Genoa Food Market Tour is designed to give an introduction to the culinary styles of the region and you will be joined by a local chef to select the freshest ingredients for your cooking class experience to follow.
Genoa Cooking Class
Join us for a Traditional Cooking Class in Genoa and learn how to prepare the best Ligurian and Genovese recipes with the guidance of local professionals.
It’s the perfect way to have fun, learn new skills, and discover the rich culinary tradition of Genoa. During the class, you’ll be guided through the preparation of four traditional recipes from Genoa and Liguria. At the end of the course, you’ll get to sit down and enjoy the dishes you’ve created with your fellow chefs.
Day 6: Private Transfer From Genoa To Santa Margherita Ligure & Portofino
Your private driver will pick you up from Genoa and take you to your destination in Santa Margherita Ligure/Portofino. The journey typically takes around 45 minutes to an hour, depending on traffic conditions.
Guided Visit of Santa Margherita Ligure
As you walk, the guide will provide you with interesting anecdotes and historical facts about Santa Margherita Ligure. You will have the chance to see the town’s main landmarks, such as the Castello di Santa Margherita Ligure, a medieval castle that dates back to the 13th century and offers panoramic views of the town and the surrounding area. Another highlight of the tour is a visit to the Chiesa di San Giacomo, a beautiful Baroque church that features an impressive interior decorated with frescoes, stucco, and marble.
After exploring the town center, the tour may continue with a walk along the promenade, where you can enjoy the sea breeze and the views of the Gulf of Tigullio. You will also have the opportunity to visit some of the town’s beaches, such as the Baia del Silenzio, a secluded cove surrounded by lush vegetation. The tour may also include a stop at one of the local restaurants or cafes, where you can taste some of the region’s delicious specialties, such as focaccia and pesto sauce.
You will then enjoy a ferry from Santa Margherita Ligure to Portofino.
Guided Tour of Portofino
Portofino is a small village located along the edge of a calm bay on the Italian Riviera. The village is surrounded by the green of the Natural Regional Park and Marine Reserve and is known for its luxurious Mediterranean atmosphere and rich maritime culture.
It has long been a popular destination for artists, celebrities, and writers, and is especially known for the Piazzetta, a meeting place for the international jet set. The port of Portofino is also a distinctive feature of the village, with its bright houses representing the maritime traditions of its inhabitants, who were known as “dolphins” by the Greeks and Romans for their navigational skills.
At the end of the day return to the mainland via Ferry.
Day 7: Visit Camogli
Today’s tour will begin with a stroll through the streets of Camogli, where you can admire the colorful houses and the charming harbor. As you walk, the guide will provide you with interesting anecdotes and historical facts about the village. You will have the chance to visit some of the town’s landmarks, such as the Church of San Nicolò, a beautiful Romanesque church that dates back to the 11th century.
After exploring the village center, the tour may continue with a visit to some of the local artisanal workshops, where you can see traditional crafts being made and possibly even try your hand at some of the techniques. You will also have the opportunity to visit one of the local restaurants or cafes, where you can taste some of the region’s delicious specialties, such as focaccia and pesto sauce.
Conclude the day with a Private transfer to Cinque Terre.
Day 8: Private Guided Tour of Cinque Terre
You will meet your guide in La Spezia and begin a tour of the Cinque Terre region, visiting some of the villages by train.
The first village you will visit is Monterosso al Mare, which is the largest of the Cinque Terre villages and has a documented history dating back to 1056. Monterosso al Mare is divided into two districts: the old village and Fegina, which is more touristy. This village is home to several important monuments and is a popular destination for tourists.
Vernazza is often regarded as the most charming of the Cinque Terre villages and has a documented history dating back to 1080. The village reached a high level of economic and social development during the Middle Ages, as evidenced by its well-planned town layout and the presence of important architectural elements such as lodges, churches, casetorri, and arcades. The village is dominated by the remains of the “castrum,” a series of medieval forts that include a cylindrical castle and tower, dating back to the 11th century.
Corniglia is the only village of the Cinque Terre that is not located directly on the sea. It is situated on top of a rocky promontory and is characterized by low, wide houses that are more similar to those found in the hinterland than to the typical coastal houses. This reflects the fact that the traditional vocation of the village has always been more focused on land-based activities rather than the sea.
Manarola is a hamlet of Riomaggiore and is known for its typical tower houses built in the Genovese style. The village was founded in the 12th century and is believed to be named after an ancient “magna roea,” or large mill wheel, that was located there. The town is a beautiful example of town planning, with its charming houses and rich history.
Riomaggiore is home to several important monuments, including the Church of San Giovanni Battista, which was built in 1340 and had a central design that is double the size of the side sections, as well as the Oratory of Santa Maria Assunta, which houses a 15th-century triptych and a wooden statue of the Madonna from the 1300s. The castle, which towers over the historical center of the village, is also a notable attraction.
Day 9: Cinque Terre Boat Tour
Spend your final day aboard a gozzo, a traditional fishing boat that is common in the Mediterranean, and is well-suited for exploring the bays and inlets of the region as you glide along the Ocean on a relaxing private boat tour departing from the marina in Manarola
During the tour, you will have the opportunity to visit some of the most beautiful bays and inlets of the Cinque Terre and can expect to see stunning coastal landscapes and charming fishing villages. The tour may include a stop for snorkeling, allowing you to explore the underwater world of the Mediterranean.
Some of the specific bays and inlets that you may visit during the tour include the Bay of Silence, the Bay of Poets, and the Bay of the Fieschi. These bays are known for their crystal-clear waters, rocky cliffs, and secluded coves, and are popular destinations for swimming, sunbathing, and water sports.
The tour may also include a visit to some of the villages of the Cinque Terre, such as Manarola, Riomaggiore, and Vernazza, where you can explore the narrow streets, sample local specialties, and visit historical landmarks.
Contact Our Team About Visiting The French Riviera & Italy
After nine days exploring the beautiful French Riviera, from the glamour of Saint Tropez to the charming fishing village of Portofino, and ending in the picturesque Cinque Terre region.
If you’re interested in arranging a custom version of this tour, or if you have any other questions about traveling to the French Riviera, don’t hesitate to get in touch with Travel by Luxe. Our team of expert travel advisors would be happy to help you plan the perfect trip to this amazing destination.
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